Dear White People, Justin Simien 2014
By Ali Tenenbaum
Here’s the story: four black students at an Ivy League school converge after white students throw a controversial on campus party.The topic is far from simple, the movie (unfortunately) is.
There are two ways to look at this film. The first is as a couple hours of entertainment. On that level, it’s not so great.If Spike Lee and Whit Stillman had a love child, this movie would be it.That doesn’t, on principal, make it bad, it just feels derivative.The cast is largely unimpressive, in their defense the characters are one-dimensional so they don’t have much to work with. The story is boring and unoriginal. The one bright spot in the acting is Teyonah Parris who steals all of the scenes she’s in (and even some she’s not in).
The other perspective is to look at the role this movie fills in the history of film. It’s important because it’s a story and a genre so seldom seen on screen and credit must be given to first time writer/director Justin Simien for bringing it to life despite it’s flaws.
Not for kids (has all the bad things, cussing drugs and sex). Don’t really picture grandma in this one either.
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